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"But now notice: these are all things candidates can plausibly gain more of by being on the market. To put it another way, while being on the market a while may be a disadvantage for those trying to publish their way into a research job, it may be an advantage for those trying to work their way into a teaching job."

You don't need any job to publish. You can write as many papers as you want while working as a barista or living in your dad's basement. I'm convinced you could be at least moderately well-known in your field as a weekend writer/weekday barista (stripper?). Getting a research job isn't about publications, or at least that's just one small component, as we both know and the data shows; but that's not relevant. On the other hand, to get teaching experience, you need a teaching job, and these days those are hard to get. Now, I understand that in the US you can get adjunct teaching rather easily or so I'm told, but for the rest of the world that's not really an option. In the UK, there really aren't enough beginner teaching jobs, and they seem to involve questionable hiring practices. Regardless, even if adjunct teaching was available everywhere, it would still be easier to write. You don't even have to put your pants on to write philosophy! Arguably it's hard to get into top 5 journals, although probably it's mainly luck. I mean referees are all over the place from my experience.

Recent grad

I think it depends on if you mean R1 jobs or jobs in departments with a PhD program. There are lots of R1 jobs, and their identities might surprise you. Publishing one's way into them is not uncommon. But I think you're right about PhD program jobs.

Marcus Arvan

Recent grad: I’d be curious to hear from readers. I know some people with publishing records so good that I’m shocked they haven’t been able to get something—and the only way I can really make sense of it is in the terms I mention in the OP. Are there people who were on the market a long while but who were able to publish their way into R1 jobs? I’d love to hear from some of them...

Recent grad

One of your blog members did that very recently.


The official "R1" ranking is not relevant to philosophy. For the purposes of our discipline, an R1 is a school with a 2-2 teaching load and tenure requirements based on research. And anyway, in general I think Marcus is correct. There are exceptions, and I know exceptions of people moving up after a long time at teaching schools, but these are rare. That said, I think the issues isn't what people think. Having an amazing publication record understood as lots of publications in very high-ranked journals will not get you a research job. Having a reputation as a key figure in your field will. Those who get research jobs generally have very strong publication records, but so do people without research jobs, what makes someone stand out is having a directed research project and being a name in your speciality.

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